In the Wilderness or on a High Mountain?

New JerusalemRevelation 17 begins, “And one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and spoke with me, saying, Come here; I will show you the judgment of the great harlot.” Verse 3 begins, “And he carried me away in spirit into a wilderness.”

The wilderness is a place of desolation and judgment, in contrast to the high mountain in Revelation 21 for seeing the glorious New Jerusalem. In the wilderness is the harlot but in eternity there is only New Jerusalem, the holy and pure wife of the lamb, Jesus Christ.

When the angel wanted to show John the great harlot in Revelation 17:1-3, he led him into the wilderness. In God’s eyes and in the eyes of those who are inspired by the Holy Spirit, the harlot is one who dwells in the wilderness. She lives in a place where there is no life and no fruit—a barren land. Men today can behold high church buildings, they can take part in well-prepared Sunday services, and they can admire the ability of man, but in the sight of God, everything that has its origin in Babylon is in the wilderness; it is deserted.*

The deciding factor in God’s eyes is not what is done but who is doing it. Anything done by man’s effort apart from the Lord as our life, even if in His name, is in the wilderness and is condemned. This is Matthew 7:21-23. What is blessed by God is full of His life—Christ abiding in us and we abiding in Christ. This is John 15 and this is New Jerusalem.

The Glorious Church, Chapter 5, by Watchman Nee

Graphic courtesy of pixabay.com.

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